Carrie Underwood – “Just a Dream”

Matt Clark | July 8th, 2008

Carrie Underwood

Songwriters: Hillary Lindsey, Steve McEwan, Gordie Sampson

I’ve been more than critical of Carrie Underwood’s bombastic vocals on Carnival Ride, but, as I noted in my review of that album, there is one song on which Carrie’s performance really works, and that’s “Just a Dream,” Carnival Ride‘s deserving fourth single. Deserving not only because of its intrinsic quality, but because it’s a song that needs to be examined outside of the confines of an album on which it unfairly blends in with the scenery.

Of course, when you pluck a song out of its comfy album home and really scrutinize it, you don’t always like what you find, and I suspect that many are going to feel that way about “Just a Dream.” The first verse of this song is an absolute mess, a confusing absolute mess that took several careful listens to resolve.

Let me clear up any confusion by summarizing the narrative: a young woman (“it was two weeks after the day she turned 18″) is ostensibly going to get married (“all dressed in white, going to the church that night”) to someone who she hasn’t seen in quite awhile (“she had his box of letters in the passenger seat”) but when she arrives receives the horrible surprise (“and when the church doors opened up wide she put her veil down trying to hide the tears oh / she just couldn’t believe it”) that her husband-to-be has in fact been killed in military action (“she heard the trumpets from the military band / and the flowers fell out of her hands / Baby, why’d you leave me, why’d you have to go / I was counting on forever, now I’ll never know…. Everybody’s saying he’s not coming home now”).

Believe it or not, it took four listens — four careful listens, plus some reflection — for me to write such a cogent summary. “Just a Dream” is a strange song in that it can be appreciated by those who don’t care about the lyrics, those who scrutinize the lyrics, but not by those who merely listen to the lyrics. It could have been a jarring, epic song, but instead it’s just a confusing song, and I think that I have a handle on what went wrong.

The subject of “Just a Dream” is receiving the surprise of her life, in a very bad way, and the song ought to reflect that. Instead, writers Hillary Lindsey, Steve McEwan and Gordie Sampson send mixed messages from the beginning. “Night” clashes with “white” — a church at night is highly suggestive of a funeral, to which no one wears white — and things just get more confusing from there. “She had his box of letters in the passenger seat / six pence in her shoe / something borrowed something blue” are mixed metaphors that don’t resolve any of the ambiguity surrounding our young girl’s expectations. To make matters worse, Mark Bright’s arrangement is foreboding from the first note and Carrie’s vocal performance on the broken first verse sounds conflicted and confused, just like the writing.

Metaphors aside, the premise of a woman who thinks she’s walking into her wedding actually walking into her lover’s funeral is simply implausible. It’s the kind of implausibility that could be quite startling and memorable if done right, but it’s not done right here. It’s a terrible swing and miss by the writers, but give credit where it’s due: they weren’t afraid to swing for the fences, and Underwood and Bright were willing to record (and release) a risky song that deviates significantly from the Carrie canon and the Carnival Ride fodder.

And once you get past that first verse…wow, what a song. Underwood really finds her voice as the emotion boils over during the second chorus, and while the writers don’t aim for nearly as much in the second verse, they at least stay out of their own way and give us a nice image: “then they handed her a folded up flag / and she held on to all she had left of him oh and what could’ve been / and then guns rang one last shot and it felt like a bullet in her heart.”

“Just a Dream” is not perfect. In fact, it’s deeply, deeply broken. But the single is a great vocal performance of a risky song, and I respect that.

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  1. Todd
    July 8, 2008 at 8:31 pm

    Matt you’re dead on in your comments on the first verse I had to pay VERY close attention to follow along.I must say I hated the heavy percussion in the instrumental arrangement but Carrie’s vocals were probably the best I’ve heard from her. So I guess between the poorly constructed first verse and my dislike of the instrumentals I would have probably given it a very mild thumbs down, although I do agree with most of your review.

  2. dudley
    July 8, 2008 at 8:38 pm

    Matt C., I had to read this review a few times to make sure you were serious. I’m flabbergasted that you think those first verse lyrics are meant to be taken literally and as a linear expression of the passage of time. You’re sincerely asserting that this is a song about a bride who thinks she is going to her wedding but, SURPRISE! her fiancé is dead and it’s his funeral? If the premise of this song were as you describe it, it would not only be implausible, it would also be a mockery of a tragic and, too often, real story of personal loss.

    But that’s not the premise of the song. In my view, there are two interpretations of the lyrics. One is that the first verse, up through the line about the lead character putting her veil down, trying to hide her tears, is a flashback. It isn’t immediately obvious that those lines are a flashback, but reality crashes in when the “trumpets of the military band” are heard. It’s an emotionally manipulative reveal to the listener (not the protagonist), but more powerful because of the contrast between the dreams and hopes that accompany the image of a young bride and the reality of the funeral, with those dreams having been cruelly extinguished. Another way of looking at it is that there is a flashforward from the wedding scene to the funeral scene.

    The second interpretation is that the first verse is introducing us to a widow in denial. Either literally or metaphorically, the protagonist’s heart and mind are on her wedding day, and she is experiencing the reality of her loss anew on this funeral day for her husband.

    Either way, the foreboding in the production is deliberate. I find it just about impossible to believe that songwriters attempting a serious treatment of this subject would go for the premise of a young bride-to-be not knowing of her fiancé’s death while serving the country. They’ve told a powerful enough story centered on the emotion of denial in a time of loss, and as the song goes on, Carrie’s vocal performance conveys the force of that denial, and later, the onset of the realization of that loss, with anger, devastation, and finally, a pained wistfulness that this were “just a dream.”

  3. Dan M.
    July 8, 2008 at 9:22 pm

    Matt’s interpretation actually makes the most sense to me, although I’m not certain it’s the one the writers meant, either. If they were trying to convey something that happened in the past in the first verse (through either flashback or a “state of mind” thing), they should have made that a lot more clear (for example, not using the same past tense form as the second verse, which makes the first verse seem like it must be a part of the same linear story).

    Anyway, great review. You articulated what is great and lacking about this song very, very well.

  4. Rich
    July 8, 2008 at 9:58 pm

    The song is called “Just a Dream”… do your dreams always follow the same “linear story”? I imagine in the video that Carrie is going to arrive in a white dress to the church as if she is going to get married and then her dress will turn to black for the funeral – JUST like things change in A DREAM, things change in the lyrics to this song. Just wait until the video comes out, it will make it easier to follow, I’m sure. Also, what’s so wrong with a song being left to your own interpretation? That makes it more interesting, in my opinion… no need to dumb down lyrics. (I like your stuff 9513 – I remember reading something after Carrie did the Eddy Arnold tribute where one of you said that she should record an album with songs filled like that. It would sound amazing!)

  5. Ashley
    July 8, 2008 at 10:00 pm

    Dudley’s interpretation is spot on accurate. Guys— the song is not meant to be taken literal at every line. Parts of the song are meant metaphorically, but it is still easy to follow.

    The girl is in denial, grieving the loss of her man who died in battle. End of story. She pretends she is at her wedding, but then realizes she is at the funeral— and the reality of the tragedy and death washes over her…and she hears the “saddest song she ever heard” sung by the church congregation, etc.

    She is wearing black, not white…because she is at the funeral, not the wedding. That was “just a dream”— hence, the title of the song.

    I think it is a very simple song, with a very simple message– and that simplicity, makes it incredibly moving, deep, and heartwrenching.

    Carrie sings the heck out of it- and I predict many grammys, CMAs, and ACM’s will be coming her way again, from this song. It is the JEsus Take the Wheel of Carnival Ride- which is a GREAT album and not bombastic at all, as you commented.

    What is wrong with singing to the heavens if you have the voice to do it, as Carrie does? She sings like an angel- and is the best singer in country music period, right now. Singing with passion, makes you feel the passion…whereas singing with no energy, power, or range, like some other female country singers we know (cough- taylor swift-cough) moves me as much as a blank wall.

    Carrie has the voice of an angel– and I for one, want her to use it. I know you guys prefer simple, traditional country music– but sometimes, more is more…It is not always less.

  6. Brady Vercher
    July 8, 2008 at 10:09 pm

    I think it’ll be hard to get an objective opinion on this song, but I think Matt did an excellent job.

    You almost have to willfully interpret the song to not consider the first verse linear and that’s a problem. The “dream” interpretation is plausible, but ultimately, I don’t think the songwriters meant for the song to be a literal telling of a dream.

    Other than that, I think the lyric itself is powerful. As for Carrie’s performance, it’s great until she goes overboard at the end, although I’m not completely sold on the interpretation. I think the melody of the chorus also detracts from the interpretation, though, so there’s not a whole lot that Carrie could have done better.

  7. Andie
    July 8, 2008 at 10:10 pm

    I see a young widow on her way to her husbands funeral, but her mind takes her to the trip to the same church on her wedding day, when their lives were so full of hope and promises. Then opening the door to the church for the funeral, she still has trouble putting herself in the present. Feeling like she is still watching someone else go through the tragedy of loss. Just my take. Beautiful song.

  8. northtexas
    July 8, 2008 at 10:17 pm

    Here’s the acoustic version of JAD…wish they would have released it as the single.

  9. Matt C.
    July 8, 2008 at 11:36 pm

    All of the interpretations that you guys have offered are plausible, but all have some problems. Same with mine. It’s just a messy song.

    I think that the big, big problem with this song is that clash between “white” and “night.” It’s what really tripped me up. Combine those two images and I think that the wedding and funeral become intertwined in a very narrative kind of way so it becomes hard to interpret it as “just a dream.” That why I interpret the song the way I do. I could also buy the interpretation that this is a widow who is so messed up over her husband’s death that she actually wears her wedding dress to the funeral. I realize that both interpretations create implausible life situations, but to make any sense of this song, you either have to do that or go “off script” and give the writers credit for something that they communicated very clumsily.

  10. Sugarlips
    July 9, 2008 at 5:55 am

    Damn am I glad you are just a reviewer on an unimportant web site, as a journalism graduate I am shocked that you can’t even understand a song after 4 attempts. I’m also a bit confused on why you have a problem with white and night? who gives a crap? This song made perfect sense to me from the very first listen. I guess sometimes quickly sometimes slowly. To bad a reviewer can’t think a little quicker. Great song by the way and just beautiful, you might want to quite trying to think so hard and just try and actually enjoy the song.

  11. Sugarlips
    July 9, 2008 at 5:56 am

    The only thing messy about the song is in your messy thoughts, sorry but I’m totally perplexed with you thinking.

  12. Jim Malec
    July 9, 2008 at 6:14 am

    Any creative work must be able to stand on its own. Unfortunately, a songwriter or author does not get to go around and explain how the work was “meant” to be taken to everyone who might encounter it.

    Whether or not verse in question is “meant” to be taken literally is irrelevant, because the way it is constructed is still jarring.

  13. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 7:13 am

    I just didn’t think it was a particularly interesting or compelling song.

  14. Matt B.
    July 9, 2008 at 7:32 am

    I didn’t ‘get’ the song until I heard the ‘acoustic’ version of the song where you can let the melody play behind her vocals. We have it up for listen on our audio page at Roughstock. Here’s the link (hope that’s ok).

    Just A Dream – Acoustic

  15. northtexas
    July 9, 2008 at 7:32 am

    “The second interpretation is that the first verse is introducing us to a widow in denial. Either literally or metaphorically, the protagonist’s heart and mind are on her wedding day, and she is experiencing the reality of her loss anew on this funeral day for her husband.”

    Exactly the way I interpreted the song. Hopefully the video will give a clearer picture.

    This was offered by Theresa at Country Universe:

    “The song is very clear– not confusing at all. She is at the funeral of her fiance or husband lost in battle- but she is having trouble accepting the reality of his death– so she imagines that she is actually at her wedding. But she is forced into reality when she hears the military band, etc- and hears the “saddest song she ever heard” by the church congregation. She realizes she is at his funeral, and the pain of it is overwhelming. She cannot handle the reality– so she wants it all to be “just a dream.”

  16. Jan
    July 9, 2008 at 7:35 am

    I think that Dudley’s interpretation is closer to correct. The first verse is “a mess” on purpose…it is the dream sequence….it’s not meant to make linear sense…as dreams don’t make linear sense. A clue (I think) is that she has his “box of letters in the passenger seat”…..what bride actually drives herself to a wedding with six pence in her shoe and a box of letters beside her in the car? THIS is the dream part…..yet the singer wants (denial) the funeral to be the dream part. It’s a play on the concept of dream totally….which part is “just a dream”? I think the first part is supposed to be messy…and I think, like Rich says, the video will hopefully clarify this.

  17. Lori R
    July 9, 2008 at 7:48 am

    I’m glad Matt C had the same eye-crossing experience with the first verse that I did.

    I, too, thought the timeline was implausible. My interpretation it that she was going to the church to get married, then received the news that her husband-to-be had died on active duty. It just doesn’t happen that way.

    Vocals are good, though.

  18. leeann
    July 9, 2008 at 7:58 am

    As Kevin pointed out at country universe (in the comments), she wouldn’t have been given a folded flag if she hadn’t already been married to him. So, it’s kind of obvious that she wasn’t literally going to the church thinking that she was getting married and then was shocked to learn that she was going to his funeral. Because I wasn’t fully listening to the song the first time, I was a bit confused as well.

    Good point about the box of letters; it’s doubtful that she’d bring a box of his letters to what she thinks is their wedding.

    …And I’m not even a dedicated Carrie Underwood fan…

  19. Jack
    July 9, 2008 at 8:37 am

    I get chills listening to the song, the melody and Carrie’s vocals are riveting. The lyrics are, however, confusing. I would like to know what the writers were really trying to say. As it is, I can enjoy the song regardless of whether it is a “dream sequence”, metaphorical, or some interleaved-time reality story.

  20. Brady Vercher
    July 9, 2008 at 8:47 am

    At first, I thought the immediate switch from the wedding to the funeral was a bit heavy handed, but I think Matt did a good job of explaining that it could have been startling and memorable had it been done right. It would be easy for any songwriter to present a jubilant time in one’s life then immediately throw a curveball and switch to a devastating event to create a stark contrast and shift in mood. The timeline in the first verse, however, is completely implausible, unless of course, it is a dream, but considering the protagonist wishes it were “just a dream” we can conclude that it is in fact not a dream, thus making it implausible. As Matt said, it’s just messy.

    It was two weeks after the day she turned 18
    all dressed in white, going to the church that night
    She had his box of letters in the passenger seat

    I’m assuming she was going to the church two weeks after she turned 18 to get married because she’s dressed in white. I’m not convinced that night is indicative of a funeral because the internment ceremony usually takes place during daylight hours and weddings do take place in the evening or at night and are typically formal. Who exactly would take a box of letters do the wedding though? They’re obviously letters he had written her while overseas at war, so we’re wondering if she’s traveling to the funeral instead.

    six pence in her shoe
    something borrowed something blue

    This is clearly indicative of a wedding and is actually a tradition that brides follow to have a happy marriage.

    and when the church doors opened up wide she put her veil down trying to hide the tears oh, she just couldn’t believe it

    These lines don’t clearly indicate whether it’s a wedding or a funeral and could apply to both equally, which is what it seems the songwriters were trying to do through this whole verse, but the concept is pretty muddy.

    she heard the trumpets from the military band and the flowers fell out of her hands

    The trumpets from a military band would seem to indicate a funeral. I’m not fluent in military traditions, but wouldn’t the trumpets typically play at the internment ceremony rather than in the church? The flowers, on the other hand, seem to indicate a wedding.

    Furthermore, what exactly does this line in the chorus mean: “Everybody’s saying, he’s not coming home now?”

    In the second verse, the congregation stands up to sing, which indicates they’re still in the church, but the the guns firing indicate they’re at the cemetery for the internment. And the fact that they presented the flag to the subject would indicate that she is already married, right?

    There is clearly room for interpretation and the timeline is muddied, reinforcing the idea that the song is sloppy and deeply broken.

    For those offering the video up as the ultimate interpretation, that only solidifies the idea that the song is sloppy. As Jim mentioned, the song should be able to stand on it’s own.


    northtexas, Theresa commented under a couple of different names here as well. I like this part of her explanation that you posted: “The song is very clear– not confusing at all. She is at the funeral of her fiance or husband…” It’s absolutely clear but she doesn’t know if the subject is married or not? Hmmm.

  21. Chris N.
    July 9, 2008 at 8:49 am

    I have never heard the first verse as literal. I think it suggests the meshing of the two events in her mind, giving way to a gradual horrified understanding of what’s actually happening. It’s a shame that mainstream country lyrics are expected to be so completely cut-and-dried that you can’t get a little artsy.

    Can’t we start the political argument already?

  22. Chris N.
    July 9, 2008 at 9:58 am

    I think a discussion of nonlinear time in fiction would be a hoot. Let’s start with Marcel Proust’s “À la Recherche du Temps Perdu” and go from there!

  23. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 9:27 am

    We could also open the debate of whether or not anyone outside of Virginia Woolf can really make non-linar time work in a piece of fiction.

  24. leeann
    July 9, 2008 at 9:31 am

    Stormy, I don’t think that would be a very fun argument.:)

  25. Dan M.
    July 9, 2008 at 9:47 am

    I second Brady’s comment about the melody of the chorus. I get what the songwriters were going for by stringing all the words together, it just doesn’t quite hit the mark for me; I feel like I could be listening to something by the latest Disney star-turned-recording artist.

    And I like Chris N.’s articulation of the first verse a lot. Part of what confused me about this song was that the second verse is so straightforward that I couldn’t figure out why the first – which bears the same structure in every other way – seemed so erratic. I can appreciate the ambiguity now for what it is; I guess I just sort of wish there was a little more structural differentiation between the two verses to cue cut-and-dry-leaning listeners (like myself, I’ll admit) to the fact that the first is supposed to be a little hazy, unlike the second, which pretty much just finishes up the story.

  26. Dan M.
    July 9, 2008 at 9:48 am

    And Matt B. – Thanks so much for that acoustic version; it completely elevates the song for me.

  27. Matt S.
    July 9, 2008 at 10:01 am

    I love reading all the comments which agree with the original Matt’s analysis…as soon as I read that people are taking the first verse literally and not realizing that it is the “dream” I quickly scroll down…because they are on a completely different page (the wrong one).

  28. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 10:02 am

    Chris: Okay, I will grant you Proust. But I still maintain that snubbery of conventional time schemes in contemporary “L”iterature is rather like snubbery of formalism is post-modern art, mocking that which one cannot do well.

  29. Chris N.
    July 9, 2008 at 10:44 am

    I believe that a rearranged timeline can be effective if employed smartly, but some people definitely use it just to be hip or to let them begin the story with a climax (“in media res”). If you do jumble the timeline you have earn it by making certain that’s the best way to tell the story.

  30. Katie
    July 9, 2008 at 11:09 am

    Ahem. *dusts off college thesis* Virginia Woolf’s nonlinear storytelling was often a way of rebelling against the patriarchy — if she didn’t tell a woman’s story chronologically, it didn’t have to end in marriage. So I agree, it’s a device that has to be earned.

    I think “Just a Dream” does, though. To me the lyrical muddiness contributes to the mood, and the result is a darker, more sophisticated song than you usually hear on country radio. I like it.

  31. Chris N.
    July 9, 2008 at 11:17 am

    Next can we discuss the shifting first-person and second-person perspectives in “Bob That Head”?

  32. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 11:20 am

    Exactly, non-linar time can work to serve the story if it is in service of something larger. In this case it might have served to show the madness that resulted in her husband’s death. However the writers failed to serve that purpose when they locked the second verse into a single and linar time frame.

  33. northtexas
    July 9, 2008 at 11:21 am

    “Next can we discuss the shifting first-person and second-person perspectives in “Bob That Head”?”

    Or perhaps “She’s a Hottie” LOL!

    At least this song does stimulate a lively discussion.

  34. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 11:23 am

    Chris: The shifting from second to first person perspective in Bob That Head, combined with the obvious double entendre can only mean that the writers were intentionally perpetuating the fallacy (no pun intended) that men are defined by a very specific body part. This is a shallow and over used premise at best, and a quite sexist one at worst. And while it is a current trend, reverse sexism liberates no one.

  35. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 11:24 am

    We. Are. Huge. Nerds.

  36. Faith
    July 9, 2008 at 11:30 am

    I really can’t believe anyone could have such a hard time understanding the verse. Of course she doesn’t literally walk into a church expecting to get married and then finds out that OOPS she’s at a funeral.

    It’s like A DREAM, hence the title.

    Jesus, Take the Wheel wasn’t really about driving tips either!

  37. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 11:34 am

    Okay, new topic Question:

    Would it not have been a cooler song if they had left in the verse about being chased naked down an endless hallway by a headless zombie?

  38. northtexas
    July 9, 2008 at 11:41 am

    “Would it not have been a cooler song if they had left in the verse about being chased naked down an endless hallway by a headless zombie?”

    Sound’s like something Ray Stevens would have done.

  39. Kelly
    July 9, 2008 at 11:45 am

    “Jesus, Take the Wheel wasn’t really about driving tips either!”

    It may not have been, but it was I am screaming everytime my wife drives instead of me…

  40. Kelly
    July 9, 2008 at 11:46 am

    ..sorry for the bad typing above..I meant:

    “…it is what I am screaming everytime my wife drives instead of me”

  41. Katie
    July 9, 2008 at 11:46 am

    I dunno, Stormy. There’s a song like that on Sarah Buxton’s album (“Crazy Dream”) and it’s pretty cringe-inducing. (Kevin Spacey makes an appearance …) Maybe it’s that same thing about dreams only being interesting to the people who have them.

  42. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 11:50 am

    Kelly: Imagine “Jesus Take the Wheel” from the perspective of the infant trapped in its carseat unable to scream “steer into the skid you moron” and finally understanding the whole Stewie and Lois dynamic.

  43. Kelly
    July 9, 2008 at 11:54 am

    i am not sure if truly understanding that dynamic is possible….

  44. Thomas
    July 9, 2008 at 1:19 pm

    if anyone is interested – my dreams have always a perfect timeline, are neatly sequenced and have a happy end at around 6 am.

    what about the political discussion now?

  45. northtexas
    July 9, 2008 at 1:30 pm

    “what about the political discussion now?”

    Looks like they will try to avoid the whole Iraq war issue by having the video take place during the Vietnam era…you can find leaked video pix at various sites that seem to confirm this.

  46. Chris N.
    July 9, 2008 at 1:39 pm

    …but the date on the letter she gets is 2008.

  47. Thomas
    July 9, 2008 at 1:44 pm

    i’m sure there’s some buddy of mr. cheney somewhere in washington, who’d swear on his mothers life that the vietnam war never really ended and he could prove it with a slide show.

  48. B. Jonathan
    July 9, 2008 at 1:47 pm

    Chris N., you are hilarious. Not that you haven’t heard that before.

  49. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 1:52 pm

    Chris: But the dream is a psychic flash forward to another time and another war….

  50. northtexas
    July 9, 2008 at 2:02 pm

    “but the date on the letter she gets is 2008.”

    I believe that’s the date it was filmed and I bet the video won’t show a close-up of the letter. Speculation like this was probably one of the reasons the label contacted message board owners with a request to remove the pictures.

  51. Chris N.
    July 9, 2008 at 2:05 pm

    I’m a hoot, there just isn’t any doubt about it.

  52. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 2:16 pm

    I thought you were a Who. Now I’ll never figure out who Horton heard.

  53. Chris N.
    July 9, 2008 at 2:26 pm

    Turns out it was a typo all along and Horton actually heard THE Who.

  54. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 2:28 pm


  55. Shannon
    July 9, 2008 at 2:55 pm

    I’ve never interpreted this song as being from a “widows” perspective. “it was two weeks after the day she turned 18″? she wasn’t old enough to have been married yet, but she certainly was old enough to have been engaged to be married. She lost her future husband and she wore her wedding dress to his funeral because it was the only time she would have the opportunity to wear it.

  56. Stormy
    July 9, 2008 at 3:01 pm

    Legally you can get married at 18, and they wouldn’t give her the flag were she not his wife.

  57. Nashvegas
    July 9, 2008 at 3:10 pm

    I agree with the reviewer. This is a confusing song that I still haven’t gotten a handle on after a dozen listens. If you need a video to explain the meaning of a musical number, then you’ve got a problem; especially in country music where the lyrics are supreme.

    This could have been an enormously powerful song with more carefully crafted lyrics. Can you imagine the emotional impact of a distraught war bride showing up at her husband’s funeral in her wedding dress and the horror of those in attendance? If that’s the meaning (and it’s one of my literal interpretations of the song) then that needs to be fleshed out. Whatever the true meaning is behind the first verse, I’m shocked that seasoned writers are responsible for it. Maybe they didn’t have time for any re-writes.

    If you want to hear a well-crafted song of a similar subject, dig through your CDs/mp3s for the Dixie Chicks’ “Travelin’ Soldier”. Now, THAT’S the way you write a song!

  58. Chris N.
    July 9, 2008 at 3:34 pm

    There’s a thesis to be written on the relationship between “Travelin’ Soldier” and “Just a Dream.” Whole lotta changes between then and now.

  59. Jim Malec
    July 9, 2008 at 3:53 pm

    “Can you imagine the emotional impact of a distraught war bride showing up at her husband’s funeral in her wedding dress…”

    Damn, we should write that.
    I wish you had brought me that idea two years ago!

  60. Tara
    July 9, 2008 at 5:45 pm

    My interpretation is closer to Dudley’s as well. I NEVER imagined that she was literally arriving at her wedding when she found out. Don’t see that at all.

    What’s the most puzzling to me is how you think a slightly confusing lyric hampers with the song’s magic. It doesn’t. You don’t need to know exactly what’s happening in the song to understand the basic concept and the powerful emotion behind it. It’s effective regardless of whether or not you have a firm grasp on the chain of events. Music, to me, is about “feeling” something, and if I can feel the song, I don’t really care if I don’t have a crystal clear picture in my head. Maybe that’s just me, but I have a feeling I’ll be proven right in a few months when many, many people –who can’t tell you literally what’s going on– fall in love with the song.

    It’s great that you recognize the stunning vocals in this song, but I have to laugh a little at the fact that even when Carrie delivers something you do, essentially, like – you undercut it. I know that’s your job but it’s just very indicative of the way a certain group of people look at Carrie…

  61. Gavin
    July 9, 2008 at 5:49 pm

    This song goes down a different road so to speak than most songs of the same subject. This song is about loss and not about bravery, freedom, or being proud to be an American. The impact that loss has on a family, a wife, a child, a mom and a dad. In this case a newlywed who just lost the love of her life and the future she envisioned. There are no words to describe the feeling except that she can’t breath and that she wishes that it was a dream. Every time I listen to this song I can see her and it breaks my heart.

  62. Brady Vercher
    July 9, 2008 at 5:56 pm

    The fact that no one can definitively interpret the lyrics only seems to reinforce the review, despite all the claims that it’s clearly obvious what’s going on. I have a feeling that the writers didn’t spend nearly as long writing the song and verifying it’s accuracy as we have analyzing it.

    Gavin, where exactly does it insinuate that she’s a newlywed?

  63. Chris N.
    July 9, 2008 at 6:08 pm

    You mean you don’t consider my interpretation definitive? This is very disappointing.

  64. Gavin
    July 9, 2008 at 7:31 pm

    Where does it insinuate that she’s not? She was given the folded up flag. It goes from a dream wedding to a nightmare funeral. This girl is messed up. The first chorus to me anyway is a flashback to a happier time when she was heading up to the same road to her wedding and now she’s heading down that same road to mourn the death of her husband. Can’t you see her dreaming back to when the last time she opened those doors that she saw her husband waiting for her to walk down that isle but this time she opens the doors and she hears the trumpets from the military band and in reality he is down that same isle but in a coffin. It hits like a ton of bricks.

  65. Rick
    July 9, 2008 at 7:36 pm

    Since its Carrie Underwear we are talking about, in my dreams she is showing up at the church in white Victoria’s Secret lingerie! (lol) Talk about a tempest in a teapot……..

  66. Brady Vercher
    July 9, 2008 at 8:16 pm

    Gavin, I didn’t suggest the song insinuates that she’s not a newlywed. Just wondering what gave you the idea that she was since the song doesn’t suggest it.

  67. leeann
    July 9, 2008 at 8:50 pm

    I suppose it’s her age, two weeks after turning eighteen, that makes one assume she’s a newly wed…though it’s true that people *have* been known to be married sooner.

  68. Aaron
    July 9, 2008 at 9:02 pm

    In the end all I can say is so what
    I’m done with carrie underwood songs, I’m onto better songs now

  69. B. Jonathan
    July 9, 2008 at 9:04 pm

    I miss the days of Carrie slashing tires, carving up leather seats and swinging baseball bats. No mixed messages there.

  70. Brady Vercher
    July 9, 2008 at 9:32 pm

    Leeann, two weeks after she turned eighteen is presumably when she got married, which would obviously make her a newlywed, but the song is taking place at the time of her husband’s funeral and nothing suggests that the funeral was soon after the wedding.

  71. leeann
    July 9, 2008 at 10:11 pm

    Ah, good point, Brady. I suppose I’ll go listen to the song again.

  72. leeann
    July 9, 2008 at 10:12 pm

    For some reason, I always just think she’s a newly wed. I’m not sure what exactly put that in my head.

  73. Michael
    July 9, 2008 at 10:51 pm

    I have never heard of a wedding at night in my life. Maybe it is just my religiion- I am Catholic- but we always get married in the morning or early afternoon. The reception is at night- but the church ceremony is always in the morning. Do other religions get married at night? That is what confused me by MAtt’s comment.

    The “night” means funeral to me or death- since to me, the wedding ceremony always takes place in the morning.

  74. Michael
    July 9, 2008 at 11:03 pm

    I think it is irrelevant whether she ever married the guy or not actually. The point of the song- is that she lost her true love in a war– and she can’t’ handle the reality of that pain. So she dreams of her past wedding, or her pretend future wedding– whatever the case may be- to escape the reality of the funeral. You can feel the pain in every note Carrie sings.

    Personally– I like songs that make you think. I am tired of being spoon fed boring songs that are so linear that there is no room for the imagination. The best poetry, and songwriting, to me– is poetry that makes you argue with your friends about what the real meaning is.

    We are all spending alot of time bantering back and forth over what the song really means here– so that means it’s good. It accomplished its goal, to make you think, debate, argue, cry, etc- and most importantly– feel the pain of the woman who lost her one true love.

  75. Jaime
    July 9, 2008 at 11:47 pm

    I have nothing to say; I just want to be the 75th comment.

  76. bresenolouie
    July 10, 2008 at 1:44 am

    I was surprised you did not get the real message of the narrative of the song “Just A Dream”. This is a haunting tale of a young widow attending the funeral of her husband who died fighting for our freedom. The funeral starts at the verse “And when the church doors opened up wide. She put her veil down trying to hide the tears…” Then the writers used a “Flashback” to show that they got married two weeks after the day she turned eighteen in the verse “It was two weeks after the day she turned eighteen…All dressed in white, going to the church that night.” The fact that they handed her a folded up flag is a confirmation that the wedding already happened before the church doors open up wide. During the funeral, she feels clinging to the fact and so desperate to accept the reality that her husband is already dead. She is in a state of denial and could not believe that this is happening to her…She said that this is JUST A DREAM. Very sadly, this is not the reality because this is not JUST A DREAM, but, a FACT that she could not accept. This is the most powerful song I ever heard in my entire life. Lots of very powerful stuff in the song.

  77. Ronda
    July 10, 2008 at 5:24 am

    I got married on a Friday night in a Baptist church, 25 yrs ago. So, yeah it does happen.

  78. leeann
    July 10, 2008 at 5:45 am

    Not to add to the testimonials, but I was married on a Friday night too (at my parents’ house), four years ago.

  79. Kelly
    July 10, 2008 at 7:25 am

    I got married on a thurday night in vegas…after i lost a bet (kidding about the bet, not the thursday night part)…the elvis that walked my bride down the aisle was fantastic, i am happy to report…

  80. Vicki
    July 10, 2008 at 7:27 am

    Yes very powerful song indeed. I’m a Carrie fan and found nothing appealing in “Last Name”, but definitely hoped this would be a song coming off her album and so glad it is!

  81. Paula
    July 10, 2008 at 7:46 am

    Vicki, I thought “Last Name” was a very bad rehash of Alan Jackson’s “Married to Waitress and I Dont Even Know Her Name”. Alan’s song was upbeat and fun and a bit satirical, but Carrie’s was just bad.

  82. Gavin
    July 10, 2008 at 8:04 am

    Brady, I suppose it could have happened a few years after the wedding and it would fit in with a flash back type scenario. The reference to her age is what had me leaning toward newlyweds but that would make it too easy.

  83. Chris N.
    July 10, 2008 at 8:29 am

    Will somebody let me know when we get done with the timeline analysis and get on with arguing about the war?

  84. Stormy
    July 10, 2008 at 8:34 am

    Chris: But that’s the beauty of the song–it manages to invoke the war for purpose of the “if you hate this song you don’t support the troops” marketing while at the same time sidestepping having any sort of an opinion that anyone could disagree with.

  85. Chris N.
    July 10, 2008 at 8:51 am

    That’s the thing that strikes me about this song. If it had been released in 2003 the argument would have been the opposite — that if you LIKE this song you don’t support the troops. (The very specious argument being that focusing on the tragedy of troop deaths lessens Americans’ enthusiasm for war and therefore gives aid and comfort to the enemy.)

  86. Gavin
    July 10, 2008 at 10:18 am

    This song for me has nothing to do with the war other than he is a soldier and he died. It doesn’t mention which war. For all we know this could be the Civil War or WWII. The subject is the wife of a soldier and how his death affects her.

  87. Stormy
    July 10, 2008 at 10:38 am

    The subject is much more limted than that, as we don’t see more than a moment of her life.

  88. Gavin
    July 10, 2008 at 11:33 am

    The moment she finds out her husband is dead. What does one feel that first moment upon hearing the news? A roller coaster of emotions that begin to separate with time as the process of mourning begins. Sadness, confusion, and anger would be the dominate feelings initially and I think that really comes out in Carrie’s vocal.

  89. northtexas
    July 10, 2008 at 11:34 am

    Since its Carrie Underwear we are talking about, in my dreams she is showing up at the church in white Victoria’s Secret lingerie! (lol) Talk about a tempest in a teapot

  90. northtexas
    July 10, 2008 at 11:40 am
  91. Chris N.
    July 10, 2008 at 2:04 pm

    That’s quite a link, sir.

  92. Stormy
    July 10, 2008 at 6:34 pm

    That girl needs to eat.

  93. Michael
    July 10, 2008 at 10:55 pm

    She looks beautiful in those pictures on the beach. She was with her family and friends recently on a much needed vacation after touring since January…I feel bad for her that the paparazzi photographed her when she was trying to relax and have some privacy.

  94. Chris N.
    July 11, 2008 at 12:01 pm

    She could use a sandwich or two, but still …

  95. northtexas
    July 11, 2008 at 1:07 pm

    “She could use a sandwich or two, but still”

    If she put on a few pounds folks would start saying she’s getting fat. Miranda Lambert & Kelly Clarkson get criticized for being chubby …you can’t win.

  96. Stormy
    July 11, 2008 at 1:36 pm

    Northtexas: And if Kelly were as much overweight as she is underweight we would be criticizing her for putting her health in jeopardy. Her health isn’t any less jeopardized because she is conforming to a destructive beauty standard.

  97. Stormy
    July 11, 2008 at 1:36 pm

    Correction: Carrie. Kelly isn’t underweight anymore.

  98. bresenolouie
    July 11, 2008 at 8:53 pm

    Man…that is a gorgeous and HOT, HOT, HOT body!!! Perfect figure – Carrie Underwood!!! I know already that her face is gorgeous. This is the first time I saw her in a bikini. WOW!!!WOW!!!WOW!!!

  99. Rainbow
    July 12, 2008 at 1:58 pm

    This is actually just one of two songs I really like by Carrie. (The other one being “So Small”.)

  100. Evie
    July 12, 2008 at 5:29 pm

    I just can’t believe you actually said this song is “deeply, deeply broken.” Then you gave it a thumbs up. We all know you are not a fan of Carrie Underwood. I think I read your reviews just to see how outrageous your remarks are. This song is beautifully done and you know it. You just can’t say something good about her work without something bad to go along with it. I guess this is something that we have come to expect.

  101. bresenolouie
    July 12, 2008 at 8:38 pm

    Although I have the impression that the 9513 critics are traditional country music lovers, I still consider this as a very good review for Carrie. They have great reviews for Carrie like the performance of “I’ll Stand By Your Man” at Opry, “Make The World Go Away” at ACM 2008, “Carrie Underwood Will Be The Next To Be Invited As Member of The Grand Ole Opry”, etc. However, they will appreciate the “Greatness of Just A Dream and Carrie Underwood” more if they really understand the first verse. It is a very strong dramatic musical cues. As I said in my previous comment, the writers used a “Flashback” – the widow’s memories of their wedding day at the church, two weeks before she turned eighteen, before the church doors opened up wide for the funeral. The funeral starts when the church doors opened up wide and she put her veil down trying to hide the tears. The widow is losing her husband, the inspiration of her life, at the funeral…She is losing her HOPES and DREAMS which started during that wedding day…She is counting on her husband forever for these HOPES and DREAMS and now, it’s GONE at the funeral…It is just so painful to deal with.

  102. bresenolouie
    July 12, 2008 at 8:41 pm

    I mean, they got married two weeks after the day she turned eighten.

  103. Chris N.
    July 13, 2008 at 10:13 am

    I’m just amazed that Hillary Lindsey, Steve McEwan and/or Gordie Sampson haven’t popped in yet to explain the first verse.

  104. Stormy
    July 13, 2008 at 10:59 am

    Maybe they are still looking for the same mescaline that inspired it…..

  105. Rick
    July 13, 2008 at 11:33 pm

    Aimee Mayo probably warned Hillary Lindsey to steer clear of The 9513! Or maybe Alison Bonaguro did! I get so confused…..

    PS – Its worth catching the replays on GAC of this weekend’s “Opry Live” just to see Radney Foster and Kim Richey together on stage. Great stuff. Its too bad they featured Phil Stacey on the TV broadcast segment when Jypsi was on the program as I’d much rather watch the female members of Jypsi. I’m glad Ricky Skaggs did that recent album for Cracker Barrel as he never plays his country hits on the Opry any more, just the Bill Monroe stuff…(booorrriiinnnggg)…..

  106. Kelly
    July 14, 2008 at 7:49 am

    Stormy: If we could have as many “mescaline” refernces as we do Dale WAtson mentions, this site would be even better than it already is!!!

    BTW, I am pretty sure that the orgianl first verse had Carrie toting a “red umbrella” to cover all her pain, but they wanted to wait until the greatest hits album to break that one out again…

  107. Stormy
    July 14, 2008 at 8:33 am

    I watched Gonzo this weekend, so my mind is a little preocuppied with acid….and bats.

  108. Kelly
    July 14, 2008 at 8:38 am

    I actaully got to hit a movie this weekend, my choice was between that and “the visitor”, i ended up choosing “the visitor”, based upon being more in the mood for a fictional story vs. a docu-type thing. I highly suggest it…..Country Music, there, this is a relevent comment now…

  109. Chris N.
    July 14, 2008 at 8:48 am

    Careful, Rick — one of those Jypsi girls isn’t legal.

  110. Stormy
    July 14, 2008 at 10:43 am

    Kelly: Yeah, well, my movie had more sex, drugs, rock and roll and really freaky stuff in it. Lol.

    Actually leaving the theatre the greeter asked me how my movie was and then said, “Sex in the City, right.” That momentary flash of Carrie Bradshaw and Hunter Thompson in the same box nearly broke my brain.

  111. Kelly
    July 14, 2008 at 11:15 am

    dang it!! I knew i picked the wrong flick!!!

  112. Rick
    July 14, 2008 at 3:10 pm

    Chris, I actually got to chat with Lillie Mae just outside the tent where Sam Bush was performing during the Stagecoach Festival. I asked her what was up with her label announcing the indefinite delay of the CD release of Jypsi’s debut album and she was unaware of it! When Lillie Mae sings live her vocals tend to go all over the map, so she just needs to add a touch of discipline into the mix……

  113. northtexas
    July 14, 2008 at 6:19 pm

    Back to topic.

    Country Aircheck Today Top 5 Downloads: Here are Play MPE’s Top 5 for July 13:

    CARRIE UNDERWOOD/Just A Dream (19/Arista)
    KID ROCK/All Summer Long (Atlantic/CO5)
    LITTLE BIG TOWN/Fine Line (Capitol)
    TOBY KEITH/She Never Cried In Front Of Me (Show Dog)
    BILLY CURRINGTON/Don’t (Mercury)

  114. Michael
    July 15, 2008 at 10:31 am

    I cannot wait to see the video. Hopefull– if roman White produced it- it will be a masterpiece, along the lines of the Before He Cheats video, or Wasted. I was not a fan of the Jesus Take the Wheel video, though the song was incredible. I liked his other videos- but he needs to knock this one out of the park to clarify what some of you are confused about. I think most people get the meaning- it still seems clear to me- but if you need a video to clear up confusion, then so be it. It doesn’t take away from the greatness of the song, or Carrie’s vocals.

    I think Carrie sounds even better in this song then Jesus Take the Wheel, and I never thought she could surpass that song. Makes me think she is getting better vocally- and that we have only just begun to see what she is capable of.

  115. bresenolouie
    July 16, 2008 at 2:13 am

    I strongly agree, Michael. “Just A Dream” is a definitive masterpiece of our time. It is a haunting tale of a young widow attending the funeral of her husband who died fighting for our freedom, in service for our country. Before the interment in the church starts – before the church doors opened up wide and she put her veil down trying to hide the tears for the funeral, the widow had a flashback in her mind, the widow’s memories of their wedding day, two weeks after the day she turned eighteen. When the church doors opened up wide and she put her veil down trying to hide the tears, she feels clinging to the fact and so desperate to accept the reality that her husband is already dead. She could not believe that this is happening to her and keep on saying that this is “Just A Dream”, she is in a state of denial. Very sadly, this is not the case, but the reality that she could not accept at that time. In this funeral, the widow is losing her husband, the inspiration of her life…She is losing her HOPES and DREAMS which STARTED during that WEDDING DAY…She was counting on her husband forever for these HOPES and DREAMS and now, they are all gone at this funeral…IT IS JUST SO PAINFUL TO DEAL WITH. This very strong dramatic musical cues was supported by lots of very powerful stuff in conveying the emotional pain and suffering of this young widow. Carrie’s classic and tremendous vocal is technically skilled, powerful and gorgeous and complement and blended so well with a well crafted interplay of instruments that created a very strong emotional tension in this song’s aesthetic, the emotional pain and suffering of this young widow for losing her husband. Carrie felt and captured the strength and the sincerity of the melody and the lyrics of the song and she sang it with conviction. MASTERPIECE!!!

  116. Stormy
    July 16, 2008 at 8:40 am

    If this is supposed to be from “our times” meaning sometime after The Femine Mystique was published, why is she still wearing a veil to a funeral and why are we expected to believe that her hopes and dreams started on her wedding day?

  117. bresenolouie
    July 16, 2008 at 4:58 pm

    Symbolically, the HOPES and DREAMS of the HUSBAND and WIFE starts during WEDDING DAY. The writers are using symbolism. “She put her veil down trying to hide the tears.” is a part of the dramatic monologue to make the dramatic musical cues stronger.

  118. Stormy
    July 16, 2008 at 5:56 pm

    What are the veil and her hopes and dreams symbolic of?

  119. Chris N.
    July 16, 2008 at 7:07 pm

    Certainly a wedding day represents a new beginning, while the funeral is an ending. The veil is symbolic because it’s being used for a different purpose than her wedding veil would have been.

    Does no one wear a veil to a funeral anymore?

  120. Chris N.
    July 16, 2008 at 7:11 pm

    The point is, the setting for the happiest day of her life is now the setting for the saddest day of her life, which means that she must endure the latter while constantly being reminded of the former.

  121. Bobby
    July 16, 2008 at 7:42 pm

    Wow. I swear, Hillary Lindsey knows how to write convoluted lyrics (see “Red Umbrella”). This is a million times better than the turd that was “Red Umbrella”, though, just judging from the review.

  122. Stormy
    July 16, 2008 at 9:07 pm

    No, people don’t wear veils to funerals anymore.

  123. Stormy
    July 16, 2008 at 9:17 pm

    Chris: I get that, because its pretty obvious. Its a fairly overused literary device. But what is the larger symbolism.

  124. Chris N.
    July 16, 2008 at 10:20 pm

    Does it have to be larger than life and death?

    And why don’t people wear veils to funerals anymore? Why wasn’t I told this?

  125. bresenolouie
    July 17, 2008 at 12:32 pm

    Very well said, CHRIS N.!!! I am very much impressed by your explanations.

  126. Chris N.
    July 17, 2008 at 1:27 pm


  127. Casey
    July 18, 2008 at 1:55 pm

    I don’t think the author gets it. The song is called “Just a Dream”

    The first verse of the song is a DREAM. It was two weeks after the day she turned 18, all dressed in white, going to the church that night. She had his box of letters in the passenger seat, six pence in her shoe, something borrowed something blue. When the church doors opened up wide she put her veil down trying to hide the tears. She heard the trumpets from the military band and the flowers fell out of her hand….”

    It’s really NOT that confusing… Either A) she’s going to the funeral in the dress she married the love of her life in or B) she’s having a dream that she’s going to her wedding but when she gets there it turns out to be her fiances funeral. Much like a dream, she has the illusion of something good happening but it turns out to be something tragic. Again…. not that confusing. You don’t have to dig that deeply into it.

    This is a deeply powerful song and a STRONG vocal. Two thumbs up.

  128. terrance
    July 18, 2008 at 5:14 pm

    don’t ya’ll have something better to do then talk about my girl’s wonderful song. it’s perfect. it talks about the loss of a woman’s husband. this song is for all the military kids and wives out there who lost their husband. the reason why you can’t understand it is because its not for you its for the military people!!! Remember that!!!

  129. Stormy
    July 18, 2008 at 6:00 pm

    I would be a bit careful before assuming that any group of people doesn’t contain at least one military family.

  130. Chris N.
    July 18, 2008 at 6:36 pm

    The essential strength of the song is that it’s really about a universal situation: the sudden, confusing loss of a loved one. If it was “for” anyone in particular it would not be as good as it is.

    If bona fides are necessary for listening, two of my closest friends have done two tours each in the Middle East over the last four years, and my sister is in the Air Force.

  131. Stormy
    July 18, 2008 at 9:23 pm

    Chris: Didn’t I warn you about this song invoking the whole hate the song/hate the troops schtick.

  132. northtexas
    July 19, 2008 at 8:47 am

    Billboard likes it:

    The fourth single from Carrie Underwood’s double-platinum “Carnival Ride” finds the singer charting new territory. Previous singles have stuck to a similar lyrical theme, contrasting between Underwood’s girl-next-door image with inspirational or family-centered songs (“So Small,” “All-American Girl”) and her naughtier bad-girl side (“Before He Cheats,” “Last Name”). “Just a Dream” delivers the heartbreaking, storytelling side of Nashville with the kind of song usually reserved for vets like Reba McEntire or Martina McBride. Underwood convincingly sells the story of a young widow of a soldier killed in combat, using shades of her emotive vocal to convey anger and despair. While the subject matter is sensitive in this day and time–particularly for flag-waving country pundits–it is rooted in reality. Add Underwood’s adoration by the format’s listeners and there is bound to be an immediate and receptive response to this beautifully executed song.–Chris Williams

  133. Dustin
    July 20, 2008 at 12:44 am

    JMO: Matt, just wait for this video to come to help you understand, its ok to admit that some people like you need pictures to help you understand something, there isn’t any need of denial from you.

    I don’t think a NON-Carrie fan should be posting a review for this song. It simply isn’t fair, just like it would not be fair for the Dixie Chicks to have ME write a review for one of their songs, it simply wouldn’t be a very nice nor G rated review. If you are actually a Carrie fan, you deff fooled me. (Not being crazzy for the album at all, then not understand Just a Dream? Yea thats deff a big Carrie fan.)

    Billboard says it BEST (Previous comment)

    Matt’s review of this song is certainly no better than my review, we all put our pants on the same way. :)

  134. bresenolouie
    July 20, 2008 at 12:59 am

    Chris N. is perfectly right!!! This is a universal situation – the “REALITY IN OUR LIVES”…That all of us will experience losing a loved one – husband, wife, children, parents…Anybody very close to your heart. This song is about the sudden, confusing loss of someone very close to your heart that, very sadly, you could not accept at that time and the only thing that you could do is just to hope that it is “Just A Dream”. Up to what extent this tragic loss an individual has to deal with, this kind of an experience will vary from person to person. This song is also an “EPIC” because it is the emotional pain and suffering of a young widow attending the funeral of her husband who died fighting for our freedom, in service for our country, so that we can do what we want to do here in our country without fear of being harmed.

  135. bresenolouie
    July 20, 2008 at 4:17 am

    In this haunting tale of the young widow, she is confused about the sudden tragic loss of her husband and asked,”Baby, why’d you leave…why’d you have to go. I was counting on forever now I’ll never know.” And she is in a state of denial by saying, “This can’t be happening to me…This is “Just A Dream”.”

  136. Stormy
    July 20, 2008 at 11:30 am

    Dustin: I think we all understand Just A Dream. Its like a murkily written Dress Blues.

  137. bresenolouie
    July 20, 2008 at 4:37 pm

    9513 critics are traditional country music lovers and Carrie is a contemporary country/pop-country/rock artist. They have great reviews of Carrie of her performance in “I’ll Stand By Your Man” at Opry, “Make The World Go Away” at ACM 2008, etc. “Carnival Ride” album is an album with very strong dramatic musical cues, great pacing and with classic and tremendous vocal of Carrie. It is so HUGE and SHINY, truly genuine, like an album that someone spent so many hours in studio, perfecting it. Carrie’s classic and tremendous vocal is technically skilled, powerful and gorgeous. There is that supple quality in Carrie’s voice and there are touches of vibrato that show incredible technical skill, and she can leap it up high up to the TOP of a HUGE MOUNTAIN. This is the SIGNATURE of Carrie’s vocal. But her vocal gymnastics do not overpower the songs. Instead they complement and blended so well with a well-crafted instrumental track. The interplay of the instruments and Carrie’s vocal gymnastics throughout the arrangement is crucial to the creation of the emotional tension in the songs’ aesthetic in order to emphasize the emotional aspect of the song such as heartache, love, need, loss etc. Few songs are relatively harsh but with very infectious beat and a lot of forward drive in order to give the vocal melody greater energy. Kudos!!!

  138. Brady Vercher
    July 20, 2008 at 4:41 pm

    Anybody up for a game of buzzword bingo?

  139. Hollerin' Ben
    July 20, 2008 at 5:24 pm

    Carnival Ride” album is an album with very strong dramatic musical cues

    totally. I hate that.

    but kudos on being concise, I believe I’ll steal that for my toolbox.

  140. John Maglite
    July 20, 2008 at 5:25 pm

    I haven’t heard “I’ll Stand By Your Man,” but it sounds like it would be way more scandalous than that one Tammy Wynette song.

  141. Stormy
    July 20, 2008 at 5:48 pm

    What are the musical cues supposed to tell you to do?
    Also, my two favorite female country singers are Neko Case and Kasey Chambers. How are they more traditional than Carrie?

  142. Mirandas2cool
    July 20, 2008 at 9:59 pm

    Ok, this song is kinda confusing, but it made sense eventually. Apparently there was a clerical error at the record company, because Carrie is obviously trying to show us shes POP and NOT COUNTRY WHATSOEVER!!!!

  143. bresenolouie
    July 21, 2008 at 2:45 am

    My #1 favorite and my #1 greatest voice of all time is Carrie Underwood. Before Carrie Underwood, my top 6 favorite and greatest voice of all time are Celine Dion, Whitney Houston, Lionel Richie, Eagles, Led Zeppelin and Queen when I was still hooked at pop/rock and soft rock radio airwave. Before Season 4 American Idol Show when Carrie Underwood Wood won the title, I always thought that country music is only for people who love to wear cowboy hats. Carrie introduced me to country music and now I also love Keith Urban, Rascal Flatts, Vince Gill, Brad Paisely, Kenny Chesney and Josh Turner and I bought all their albums.

  144. northtexas
    July 21, 2008 at 9:27 am

    Hey Mirandas2cool,

    If Carrie is Country/Pop then Miranda is Country/ Rock! By the way, I bought both of their CD’s and am a big Miranda fan.

    Love or hate Carrie who else gets such a response…145 comments!

  145. ashley
    July 21, 2008 at 2:13 pm

    ok , for the record even miranda stated in the latest country weekly, that carrie has done ” great things for coutnry music” and opened the door for other female artists. also, miranda always has nice things to say about her and we all know she is not one to mince words if that were not the case. also, how is this not country?! she is telling a story , a narrative, with a light fiddle and drum in the background. what other genre does this?

  146. Mirandas2cool
    July 21, 2008 at 2:42 pm

    Hey NorthTexas, i totally get your comment, Miranda has some songs, like “Kerosene” and especially her current hit “Gunpowder and Lead” that do lean a bit toward rock, but as a whole Miranda is country since Nashville star thru her second cd. The day Carrie sings “Bring me down”, “Dry town”, or “More like her” and pulls it off like Miranda does, i’ll quit saying she cant sing country; but until then she is the Pop queen in the genre formerly known as country music. And i dont turn on country radio to hear pop, i turn it on to hear COUNTRY like “Me and Charlie talkin” by Miranda, “Sounds so good” by Ashton Shepherd, or “In color” by Jamey Johnson. ;)

  147. Katie
    July 21, 2008 at 3:29 pm

    John Maglite: I can’t stop giggling.

    I was really struck by that Miranda quote in the CW story (written by Chris N.) The article makes the point that women are surviving the radio drought by doing things differently, and the sense of camaraderie (and lack of internal country/non-country back-biting) does seem to be a part of that.

  148. Paul
    July 21, 2008 at 9:57 pm

    I find the song very dull and nothing good at all.
    It is just another dull song that Nashville write for her.

    On a side note, I thought she was popular. She is only averaging 6000 people a concert and many aren’t even sellouts according to billboard.
    In fact her last 6 concert in June weren’t even a sellout and the capacity was only 5000.

  149. Paul
    July 21, 2008 at 10:01 pm

    I find country music in general very dull these days.
    There are no big superstars like a Shania or Dolly who tracend the genre. These are the types that draw attention to country music globally.
    Shania needs to comeback and show these wannabes how it is done and how to entertain.
    Nobody even knows anything about country music where I live but they know Shania,Dolly and Johnny Cash.

  150. Paul
    July 21, 2008 at 10:05 pm

    bresen, get a grip, your over the to praise for an average song and artist is laughable.
    Oh and where I live nobody has even heard of Underwood. In fact until Shania came along nobody here even liked country music.

  151. bresenolouie
    July 22, 2008 at 2:05 am

    The information about the tour that you gave is incorrect. Most of them are sold out and only a few are almost sold out.

    From January 31, 2008 to June 23, 2008:

    Keith Urban/Carrie Underwood Co-Headline = 18.5 million – total gross.

    Carrie Underwood Carnival Ride Tour = 12.3 million – total gross.

    With only two albums released and just three years after winning American Idol that is a great Gross Income from the tour. She will have another 51 more coming plus few Fair Festivals.

    Week 139 – Some Hearts album – 6,500, Total = 6,486,500 actual soundscan sales in the United States only.

    Week 38 – Carnival Ride album – 12,657, Total = 2,230,538 actual soundscan sales in the United States only.

  152. Bob
    July 22, 2008 at 9:11 am

    I agree with Dudley in his July 8th comment. In fact, I think that the first verse lyrics are part of why the song is so interesting. You can sense this girls extreme disappointment, devastation, and disbelief at what has happened.
    A great song and REALLY great vocal.

  153. Paul
    July 22, 2008 at 10:52 am

    Bresen, no, my information is totally correct. You read too much what her fanclub says and not the actual facts from billboard.

    She is only averaging 6000 a concert which is far from a being a top act. Her last 6 concerts in June according to billboard were not sold out.In fact some of the venues only had a capacity of 6000 and were not even sold out.
    You can go to Billboard boxscores and check out the info.

    And she grossed only 12.3 million on her solo tour even though she did so many dates. She won’t even see any of that money because it costs so much for expenses and travel and paying all the people on the tour.
    She has done already 50 dates on her solo tour which is a whole bunch and she has only grossed 12.3 million. Top acts will gross twice as much at that when they do that many dates.
    And now she is going to do another 50 dates.
    All the money she makes or her tour makes will not only be paid to the promoter and the tour crew but all the travelling and expenses to go to so many cities.

    If you want the facts go and check billboard and see her concert boxscores, many of her dates were not sold out and they were very small sized capacity to begin with.

  154. Paul
    July 22, 2008 at 10:56 am

    And why the heck was my messages deleted last night?

    Bresen, I don’t like country music that much but the great Shania TWain brought me to country music.
    She is the only country artist we know here.
    There are no big stars who tracend genres like Shania or Dolly anymore.
    Shania Twain is in a league of her own and I think Nashville can’t wait for the return of the biggest country female of alltime who has set records worldwide.
    In fact nobody even liked country where I live until Shania came alone.

  155. Shayna
    July 23, 2008 at 2:17 am

    Carrie is awesome! This song will for sure be a hit. And actually I think he got his info from billboard and other places too. She sure outshines Miranda who? thats for sure

  156. bresenolouie
    July 23, 2008 at 11:40 pm

    I made a research about Shania Twain because I never heard about her until Carrie Undewood sang her “Man!I Feel Like A Woman” during Top 3 Competition of Season 4 American Idol Show in 2005. I was hooked to pop/rock and soft rock radio airwave until that time, I was hooked to the music of Celine Dion, Whitney Houston, Lionel Richie, Eagles, Led Zeppelin, Queen, Guns N’ Roses, U2, Journey, Bee Gees, Air Supply, Gloria Estefan and George Michael.

    I will not dispute the fact that “Shania Twain” is a “LEGEND”, selling 65 million albums including 48 million albums alone in the United States since 1991 up to her “Greatest Hits” released in 2004. And WOW! FOR A VERY TOUCHING LIFE EXPERIENCE before starting her great career. At least, Carrie Underwood is already graduating in college before she started her career and now already a Magna Cum Laude in her Bachelor’s Degree. I still have to learn more about country music.

  157. Thomas
    July 24, 2008 at 2:38 am

    … there really live outside the “carrie universe”?

  158. bresenolouie
    July 24, 2008 at 2:58 am

    I made a research about Carrie’s Concert Tour, too. I will not compare her to Shania Twain because Shania is already a legend. I will give comparative figures to the present country superstars:

    1. Kenny Chesney = 35.3 million
    2. Rascal Flatts = 25.4 million
    3. Carrie Underwood = 21.55 million, she will get half of the Keith Urban/Carrie Underwood Tour
    4. George Strait = 18.0 million
    5. Eagles = 15.8 million
    6. Tim Mcgraw = 14.2 million
    7. Brad Paisely = 9.4 million
    8. Keith Urban = 9.25 million + share with some of Kenny’s Tour
    9. Reba McEntire/Kelly Clarkson = 7.5

    This is from January, 2008 to June, 2008 and Carrie will have another 51 more coming and the opening act is “Little Big Town” Group. This is just two years and 7 months after the release of her debut album and with only two albums released. They will not add 51 more if they did not get a profit from 21.55 million.

  159. Stormy
    July 24, 2008 at 7:49 am

    bresen: You might start by learning that Shania is not a legend and likely never shall be.

  160. Paul
    July 24, 2008 at 11:36 am

    People like Stormy are just jealous Shania is a mega icon known worldwide and is bigger than country music. Shania was a legend just after 2 albums when she became the biggest selling country female of alltime and changed country music forever.

    Bren, nobody even knows who Carrie Underwood is where I live. Shania is an known worldwide and an icon who has set records in over 160 countries.
    Country music is such a small world. Shania is massive worldwide and has been one of the biggest names in all of music for 14 years.
    I don’t know what world you live under but you must of been hiding under a rock before 2005 lol!!

    And Like I said before new acts come and go all the time, now Taylor Swift is selling more than Undwerwood, but you will never see a massive icon and trend setter like Shania again.
    When people mention country music around the world only 3 names come up, Shania,Dolly and Johnny Cash.
    Shania will be coming out of hiatus soon and take the attention away from all of these little wannabes now on the charts.

  161. Paul
    July 24, 2008 at 11:42 am

    Bres, do you even know how the tour numbers work? lol!!! You don’t give her half of the Keith Urban numbers. Keith Urban was the major draw on that concert and he was the one who performed last. He was the veteran on that tour and he gets most of it. You don’t split it in half and to top it all off they barely see any of the money because of all the expenses.

    All you can compare is solo tours. And Carrie Underwood is only averaging 6000 people a show on her solo tour which is very little,
    Her solo tours are not drawing that much and she is not a top solo act on tour..
    It is fans like you who don’t understand numbers or stats and twist things around.
    The industry would laugh at you.
    Carrie Underwoods solo tour is not doing that well in attendance and that is a fact.
    So you can twist it all you want but she is only averaging 6000 a concert and many,many were not even sellouts.

  162. Stormy
    July 24, 2008 at 11:45 am

    I’m about as jealous of Shania as I am of Christie Brinkley.

    We have already established that I am only jealous of Danielle Spencer. Okay and Rebecca Miller a little bit. Hmmm, if I could have Rebecca Miller’s career and Danielle Spencers’ husband…….

  163. Chris N.
    July 24, 2008 at 11:46 am

    This really is a clash of titans.

  164. bresenolouie
    July 24, 2008 at 3:56 pm

    I am not hiding under a rock, I live in Western Washington, United States of America, the home region of Boeing Company, Microsoft, Starbucks Coffee and I have a College Degree in Seattle University, Seattle, Washington a Jesuit University. I was educated in Catholic Schools since I was in elementary. I work in a five star hotel in downtown Seattle dealing with Conventions.

  165. bresenolouie
    July 24, 2008 at 4:48 pm

    How can I force myself to know a singer whom I really do not know? I have my own music world and I really enjoyed it.

  166. Gavin
    July 25, 2008 at 2:26 pm

    Paul, do you really feel you have to belittle Carrie Underwood to make Shania look good? I don’t remember anyone mentioning Shania in their remarks until you blasted on the scene with your Shania sermons. You are the Shania Evangelist from hell and that is an understatement. Shania made a couple of pop albums and I am sure a few Madonna fans would love to hear all about it so why don’t you go pester them.

  167. Mirandas2cool
    July 25, 2008 at 8:49 pm

    Shayna, I’de rather people not know Miranda than for her to be know as that crummy pop artist that thinks shes country. I recently gave a Crazy ex-girlfriend cd to someone who was unfamiliar with Miranda, she listened to it and loved it. Also she cant stand Carrie who.

  168. kati
    July 25, 2008 at 9:12 pm

    Hey, mirandas2cool, why don’t you listen to Before He Cheats, Last Name, Wasted, Don’t Forget To Remember Me, Jesus Take The Wheel, Night Before (Life Goes On), Starts With Goodbye, Young And Beautiful, Whenever You Remember, I Ain’t In Checotah Anymore, Flat On The Floor, All-American Girl, So Small, Just A Dream, Get Out Of This Town, Crazy Dreams, I Know You Won’t, You Won’t Find This, I Told You So, The More Boys I Meet, and Wheel Of The World and get back to me. HOW could you say she’s POP!? She’s ANYTHING but pop. POP singers TRYING to be country are Jessica Simpson. Yeah, NO. Hate to break it to yah hun but Carrie Marie Underwood is 100% country.

    And someone up there said Tay Swift is selling more records than Carrie … NOT EVEN EFFING CLOSE. Carrie’s sold 7 million copies of Some Hearts and almost 3 million of Carnival Ride, from what I’ve heard. That’s about 10 million albums sold just from the first two. Taylor has only sold prolly almost 3 million in two years. Carrie’s had SEVEN NUMBER ONES IN A ROW, soon to be eight. Every single one of her videos has gone number one on CMT, one of which debuted at number one. She’s broken almost every record and won almost every award known to man, almost.

    And what are you talking about, NO ONE AT HER SHOWS!? I just went to Country Thunder in WI a couple weeks ago and every single person in that audience … wasted or not … knew just about every word to EVERY song she sang. I’m not even exaggerating, plus all my videos didn’t turn out because of it … I could only hear the audience singing. They didn’t know know Before He Cheats, either, They knew all the unreleased songs. When Tay Swift performed, the majority of the crowd either new only the released ones, or the really, really popular ones that weren’t released. And there were a lot of people there for Taylor, but no where NEAR who was there for Carrie.

    And by the way. I don’t know any other female in COUNTRY music who’s sold seven million copies of her debut album … not Miranda, not even Shania. That’s why they SAY Carrie’s the highest debuting female in COUNTRY music history. She’s even sold out LeAnn Rimes and her, “She hasn’t paid her dues yet” thing.

  169. Michelle
    July 25, 2008 at 9:57 pm

    paul, she is going to be up for entertainer of the year just watch, her tour on its own is 28 which is awesome for a first headlining tour. she is the top touring female country artist, and the 4th country act overall, beaten by only George Strait and Rascal Flatts and the Eagles who are on there like 100th tour or something at this point. she is the top female in country music now the only reason taylor is getting more attention is because she is doing televised appearances only instead of being on tour. Carrie has been on tour and thus not doing it as much.
    As for the keith urban/carrie concert its the second major country tour of the year, and considering how well carrie is doing on her own, and has sold out the majority of her shows, its safe to say she brought half those numbers. Keith hasent had a number one hit in a while, Carrie has at least 6 popular songs that country fans know and she is female vocalist of the year. Enough said.

  170. Stephen H.
    July 25, 2008 at 10:05 pm

    I’m not a Keith Urban fan, Michelle, but I wouldn’t discount his chart success. He hasn’t had a song miss the top 6 since “It’s a Love Thing” in 1999 (and other than “Once in a Lifetime,” which got hurt by the high debut he had through payola, he’s been entirely top 5 since then).

    But I suppose a tour of the two of them would probably be a good assumption of 50/50 — Keith attracts the housewives and other women who are in love with him, and then their daughters come along because they Idolize Carrie.

  171. Matt B.
    July 26, 2008 at 12:49 am

    Stephen don’t forget the gay men who like KU and adore Carrie as a new ‘diva’ ;)

  172. Mirandas2cool
    July 26, 2008 at 10:20 pm

    Kati, Last name and BHC is not country in my dictionary; and i dont care if Carrie won every award from here on out, you wont see me singing along to one of her songs. And the #1 songs and stuff are bought by record companies pretty much now so, that means nothing much these days. Also Carrie hasnt paid her dues, not that i can blame her for winning idol, but she doesnt know what its like to hear no 9259249539405 times, she just knows she is ms. #1 everything or else the world may end. Now i have not met her so i cant say that shes rude or anyhthing so i wont. She is to much celebrity not enough singer for me…..

  173. Gavin
    July 27, 2008 at 4:10 am

    Mirandas2cool, what makes you think that Carrie wasn’t shown the door countless times before she tried out for American Idol? The same goes for Miranda before she tried out for Nashville Star. Obviously, Miranda’s affiliation with Nashville Star hasn’t deterred you from being a fan. Personally, I’ve been a fan of Miranda ever since she performed Greyhound Bound for Nowhere. It doesn’t matter how you get your foot in the door if you can’t take advantage of the opportunity. What is your reasoning behind the too much celebrity and not enough singer statement? Carrie has toured non stop all year and has 51 more dates remaining on her Carnival Ride Tour along with more State and County Fair and Opry performances on the horizon. Sure she’s graced a few magazine covers and appeared in a few commercials only because she has a huge following and is in high demand right now. Miranda’s star is rising fast and it won’t be long before advertisers and photographers start knocking on her door more often as well. I respect your feelings toward Carrie’s music but to question her integrity and to dismiss her achievements as being bought and paid for is bordering on denial. Do you even know what you are basing your opinions on?

  174. bresenolouie
    July 27, 2008 at 1:17 pm


    Carrie Underwood was trusted by the HUGE, Walt Disney Company to sing in their history making movie “Enchanted”; Carrie was the only country singer to perform at Movies Rock with other supertars in multiple format music, singing the classic song “The Sound Of Music” of Julie Andrews, Carrie and Martina McBride were the only country singers performed at Fashion Rock, Carrie and Brad Paisely were the only country singers performed at the Grammys 2008. Carrie performed at Grammys 2007 to give tribute to legendary “Bob Wills” of the Texas Playboys of the classic country song “San Antonio Rose” and performed with Rascal Flatts to give tribute to legendary Don Henley of the “Eagles”. Carrie performed with Brad Paisely of the tribute classic country song “Make The World Go Away” at ACM Awards 2008. Carrie performed in every Country Music Awards since she released her debut album “Some Hearts”. And the most important of all, Carrie is now a member of an elite “Grand Ole Opry” promoting the GREATNESS of country music. Carrie won 51 Awards including the awards to the writers out of 62 nominations including 2 CMA Female Vocalist, 2 ACM Top Female Vocalist, 2 Grammys Country Female Vocalist and 1 Grammys Best New Artist. Recently, Carrie is in the front covers of the Cosmopolitan Magazine twice, InStyle Magazine, Allure Magazine and Country Weekly. Carrie is side by side with 50 Cents and other superstars promoting Vitamin Water. “Some Hearts” album sold 6,493,000 units in actual soundscan sales in the United States only and “Carnival Ride” album sold 2,243,172 units in actual soundscan sales in the United States only despite of skyrocketing gas prices. Do I need to mention 7 consecituve # hits at country radio airwave in just 2 years and 7 months of the release of her debut album “Some Hearts”?

  175. bresenolouie
    July 27, 2008 at 1:32 pm

    If the 7 consecutive # 1 HITS at country radio airwave were bought by the label, what about the awards that Carrie got from the prestigious music organizations and the almost 9 million people who bought the albums and the people screaming and enjoying her Live Concert Tours? Will she ever be questioned the validity of this “Phenomenal Success”? NOT ME, who was hooked to pop/rock and soft rock music from 1990 to 2005. And now I can safely say, “Wow, how great are many country songs are!!!”

  176. David Nisbet, Scotland
    July 27, 2008 at 2:15 pm

    Leave it to a bitter Miranda fan club member to make the most ridiculous comments about Carrie. It’s sad when fanatical fans of an artist resort to this stuff. But that’s sort of getting off topic.

    The one big question I have to anyone rioting about her being “not Country” is this : if she isn’t, why is she a member of the Opry?

    Carrie must be the top ‘artist people are most jealous of’ of all time. She herself says it best : “I’ve learned this, that haters wanna hate. You could sing a song perfectly, you could write the songs perfectly, and some people are absolutely going to hate you.”

  177. Stormy
    July 27, 2008 at 2:55 pm

    She is a member of The Opry because Pete Fisher sucks, and we can only hope he is still employed there to deal with the fall out of signing a bunch of flavor of the week acts. Heck, Jessica is going to perform there on the 9th. Wonder how long it will take him to invite her.

  178. northtexas
    July 27, 2008 at 6:52 pm


    Carrie & Dierk are the only recent Opry invitee’s so who are the “bunch of flavor of the week acts” you’re referring too? Carrie’s been around for three years and Dierk five. As for Jessica Simpson, she’ll be a country music trivia question.

  179. Tara
    July 27, 2008 at 7:29 pm

    Lol Miranda. Too much celebrity and not enough singer? One, did you ever stop to think that she has gained this celebrity status BECAUSE of her singing? And two, who are you (or any of us for that matter) to discount someone as an artist simply because they’re more exposed?

    It’s this sort of backward logic that makes me think the elite musical types are even more closed-minded than the the mainstream followers they so often criticize.

  180. Stormy
    July 27, 2008 at 9:43 pm

    Northtex: Carrie mostly, but I’m looking ahead.

  181. northtexas
    July 27, 2008 at 10:41 pm

    “Northtex: Carrie mostly, but I’m looking ahead.”

    Yeah that Carrie, besides holding Pete Fisher hostage until he agreed to make her an Opry member she also caused global warming, the high price of gasoline and the war in Iraq! LOL!!

  182. Kati
    July 27, 2008 at 11:33 pm

    If Carrie wasn’t country, she wouldn’t have been inducted into the Opry … a mere THREE YEARS after winning Idol.

    And, actually, Carrie HAS had no told to her several times. She had a record deal at like 14 and then got it taken away for some reason, for crying out loud. she has said several times that American Idol was her VERY LAST chance, because she had to stop trying to get a record deal and get a real job to have a real life. not many people know much about pre-idol Carrie stuff, besides … stalker-fans like me.

    btw…miranda came from a show very much like Idol too. (:

    And i really don’t get what it is between Carrie’s, Taylor’s and Miranda’s fans. They all like hate each other. lol. People get freaked out at ME because I like all three of them. haha.

  183. Dustin
    July 28, 2008 at 12:21 am

    I actually LOVE the first verse because you can interpret it in different ways.

    In my opinion, I think the woman is in denial and she’s going to her weddding because she doesn’t want to admit that her husband-to-be has died.

    She’s driving to her wedding with the box of letters….and then when she gets there it’s in fact her loved one’s funeral. She’s in denial and she won’t admit to herself the reality of the situtation.

  184. bresenolouie
    July 28, 2008 at 3:15 am

    Carrie is COUNTRY. Her heart belongs to country music!!! You can feel it if you witnessed when she was inducted by Garth Brooks at Grand Ole Opry. We are in an era of digital downloads. Apple’s Sales Revenue in Itunes alone is 1.9 billion dollars and Net Profit After Tax of 570 million dollars in 2007. In todays music climate, there is fragmentation of sales market across multiple music formats and Carrie Underwood and Grand Ole Opry must continually adapt themselves to changing needs and opportunities as long as you maintain the old tradition of Grand Ole Opry. Innovation is the key, but it is no longer the sole key to success. IT MUST BE A MARKET-ORIENTED INNOVATION. They should use their creativity in setting up a balance in gaining a competitive advantage in the fragmented market and the old tradition of Grand Ole Opry to continually exist in this kind of music environment.

  185. Thomas
    July 28, 2008 at 4:13 am

    mix country weekly with carrie’s fan club site, add some business week crap and a generous dose of domina dungeon-style devotion to it and …dang!… you’ve got it. a publication format for a whole new market segment!

    just wondering, why anyone else hasn’t thought of that before?

  186. Stormy
    July 28, 2008 at 8:00 am

    Bresen: No one cares about where Carrie’s heart is. Its a matter of where her music is.

  187. Chris N.
    July 28, 2008 at 9:36 am

    What’s a domina dungeon?

  188. Stormy
    July 28, 2008 at 11:41 am

    Chris: I’d show you, but I left my boots at home.

    Besides, this isn’t THAT kind of website……

  189. bresenolouie
    July 28, 2008 at 4:09 pm

    Carrie is already a member and already in the history of the elite Grand Ole Opry. Carrie has to diversify to have a competitive advantage in the music market so that she can continue spreading the GREATNESS of country music. The depressing fact in the reality of today’s music climate, one dud of an album or one dud of Live Concert Tours, can derail a career.

  190. Stormy
    July 28, 2008 at 4:25 pm

    Carrie needs to figure something out, because her last album didn’t do so hot.

  191. Peter
    July 28, 2008 at 4:29 pm

    Stormy, I’m trying hard not to stare at you in those boots LOL

  192. Tara
    July 28, 2008 at 5:17 pm

    Stormy, when people stop accusing Carrie of lacking all musical integrity and/or being a commercial machine, we’ll stop telling you where her heart is. Music and heart are intertwined, especially with regards to the arguments made on this page. If you can’t see that, then you’re in the wrong discussion.

  193. Chris N.
    July 28, 2008 at 5:37 pm

    Selling 2.3 million copies of a record in the current music business environment is a flippin’ miracle. It’ll do at least 3 million before it’s done, which is a further miracle. We can argue all day about Carrie Underwood’s artistic virtues, but trying to say she isn’t successful is a losing battle.

  194. Stormy
    July 28, 2008 at 6:31 pm

    Chris N: You can’t tell me that her label isn’t looking at the 6 million of Some Hearts and comparing.

    Peter: Stop staring at me. Its creepy.

  195. Stormy
    July 28, 2008 at 6:32 pm

    Tara: If her heart really is in country, why do you have to tell me?

  196. northtexas
    July 28, 2008 at 9:12 pm


    My guess is you don’t really give a hoot one way or the other about Carrie Underwood. I think you just enjoy stirring the pot and getting the last word.

  197. Tara
    July 28, 2008 at 10:34 pm

    I don’t have to tell you. It’s obvious to those who look, but most who criticize her –like you– don’t take the time to look.

    North, you’re absolutely right. So not worth the effort :)

  198. Mirandas2cool
    July 28, 2008 at 10:56 pm

    Ok, let me clarify first: i dont hate or dislike Carrie as a person whatsoever, nor do i think she “cheated” to get famous. But i was saying she didnt “pay her dues” the way most people think of it. I dont fault her for going on idol and winning at all either. One thing though, i dont think Carrie is more country because she got inducted into the Opry. I had already lost all respect for the Opry a long time ago. I think its stupid that they induct people after 2 cds no matter who it is. And for the #1s i still think there are all controlled by the record companies. I hear Carries new song 10 times locally before it goes for adds, but if i want to heara new one from Miranda, Ashton, and numerous others i have to request multiple times and thats still by no means a guarentee. I just dont care for Carries music style, its that simple.

  199. Chris N.
    July 28, 2008 at 11:07 pm

    Stormy: But one record has been out for more than two and a half years, and the other has been out for nine months. It’s not really an apples-to-apples comparison.

  200. bresenolouie
    July 29, 2008 at 1:53 am

    Chris N. is perfectly right. Let us have the comparative figures of the latest releases:
    Week Ending July 20, 2008: BB200
    1. Eagles – Long Road Out Of Eden – 3,039,507
    2. Carrie Underwood – Carnival Ride – 2,243,172
    3. Rascal Flatts – Still Feels Good – 2,009,084
    4. Garth Brooks – Ultimate Hits – 1,859,038
    Kenny Chesney, Brad Paisely, Alan Jackson,George Strait have not reached 1.5 million. Even Mariah Carey and Madonna have not reached 1.5 million.

  201. bresenolouie
    July 29, 2008 at 2:05 am

    From the figures, you will see that the current music business environment is really declining. Good news is, the Live Concert Tour Figures are doing great and the money that the writers got from the radio airwave.

  202. David Nisbet, Scotland
    July 29, 2008 at 2:12 am

    Mirandas2Cool – How do you think the first Opry stars got on it? Back in the 30s & 40s they didn’t even have albums as we know them. Going on your logic Hank Williams (amongst many) shouldn’t have become a member so soon!

    And I bet when Miranda eventually gets a #1 that’ll be the one time a #1 wasn’t “bought and paid for”!

  203. Stormy
    July 29, 2008 at 7:53 am

    Chris: Some Hearts sold 6 million before Carnival Ride was even released. And the label has spent as much money promoting Carnival Ride as they did Some Hearts. She didn’t even get the standard award show and AI boosts that artists normally get.

  204. Stormy
    July 29, 2008 at 7:53 am

    David: You cannot compare a pre-Pete Fisher Opry with a post-Pete Fisher Opry.

  205. Chris N.
    July 29, 2008 at 9:34 am

    … and ‘Some Hearts’ was two years old when ‘Carnival Ride’ was released. So let’s come back and have this argument when ‘Carnival Ride’ is two years old.

    Then again, let’s not. That would be sort of pitiful.

  206. Stormy
    July 29, 2008 at 9:36 am

    Chris: At a year old Carnival Ride has already had as many singles “promoted” to country radio. And its just not selling.

  207. Thomas
    July 29, 2008 at 10:28 am

    does anyone know, where bresenolouie is today? a day without a carrie-post-of-praise including p&l and tour balance-sheet feels kind of empty.

  208. Chris N.
    July 29, 2008 at 10:34 am

    Again, NOTHING is selling right now.

    What is this argument even about? Why does it matter whether she’s as popular as she was three years ago or slightly less so?

  209. Thomas
    July 29, 2008 at 10:37 am

    ask bresenolouie – i’m sure he knows the answer.

  210. Lucas
    July 29, 2008 at 10:47 am

    …Taylor Swift seems to be doing pretty well.

  211. northtexas
    July 29, 2008 at 11:14 am

    “Taylor Swift seems to be doing pretty well.”

    Let’s see how she’s doing in a couple of years when she starts singing more adult songs and has to find a new fan base after being dumped by all those teens & tweens who have the attention span of a flea and have moved on to the next phenom.

  212. Stormy
    July 29, 2008 at 11:35 am

    Chris: But it is still costing her label the same number of dollars to promote her. If this record doesn’t find some way of recouping those costs your going to be seeing less and less of her as her label spends less and less on her.

  213. Lucas
    July 29, 2008 at 12:14 pm


  214. Mirandas2cool
    July 29, 2008 at 4:42 pm

    David, im not saying they cant perform on the Opry soon, but to induct anyone after their first 2 cds just doesnt make sense to me. Also, youre dang right Mirandas first #1 wont have been paid for. Until this single, virtually every time i heard her on the radio, it was a request from a fan. Miranda has one of (if not the) hardest working fan clubs in all of country music, and her dumb record company is absolutley horrible. They dont sned out her singles when they come out, dont promote her on radio, not to mention the whole “Crazy Ex-Girlfriend” single mis-happ which hurt her too. So….

  215. Matt B.
    July 29, 2008 at 5:01 pm

    Labels most likely don’t “buy” hit singles anymore. They may market their artists heavily but if anyone really thinks that another “Reba” is happening, guess again. The charts are weighted differently now to avoid that Reba debacle.

    By the way Mirandas2cool, Miranda and Carrie are on the SAME ‘dumb’ record company. And, last I checked, they promote her A LOT.

  216. Matt B.
    July 29, 2008 at 5:04 pm

    Also, Mirandas2cool,

    You must also acknowledge that Miranda Lambert got ‘famous’ because she appeared on Reality TV. If “paying your dues” means being on Nashville Star compared to the exposure from American Idol, then something’s wrong with the world today.

    Oh, this post or my last one, does not mean I am to be confused with the Carrie loyalists. I’m just stating facts.

  217. bresenolouie
    July 29, 2008 at 5:57 pm

    Here is bresenolouie, guys!!! Carrie Underwood is MY #1 GREATEST VOICE OF ALL TIME. Of course the following are still my TOP FAVORITE: Celine Dion, Whitney Houston, Lionel Richie, Eagles, Led Zeppelin, Queen, Guns N’ Roses, U2, Journey, Air Supply, Bee Gees, Gloria Estefan, George Michael and Michael Jackson. GO CARRIE UNDERWOOD!!! GO!!!

  218. Stormy
    July 29, 2008 at 6:39 pm

    Matt: Why wouldn’t payola still be going on?

  219. Stephen H.
    July 29, 2008 at 6:54 pm

    I refuse to think payola is completely gone, considering the chart performance of “More than a Memory” last year.

  220. Mirandas2cool
    July 29, 2008 at 8:23 pm

    Hey Matt, thanks for comments. I understand that Miranda was also on a reality show but consider a couple things A) It was NS that had MAYBE 1 million viewers, not 25 million and most people still stay “Whats Nashville Star” when i ask/tell them 2) Miranda had been touring for close to 5 years before that in the Texas area 3) She had already put out an Indy cd and if im not mistaken had 1 or 2 singles enter the Texas charts from it.
    And about the dumb label; thats the part makes me the angriest! Why does Carrie have her first 7 singles go number one and Miranda cant get a top 10. And you cant say a song like “Last Name” is actually #1 material if released by Danielle Peck, Faith Hill, or Sara Evans. Columbia does not get the single to all the stations on release day, or promote it to get into the rotation. Yes, recentley Miranda is getting more attention/promotion, but that because Miranda earned it by getting fans with her AWESOME live shows, Album of the year award and her amazing songs shes written on her 2 #1 cds.

  221. Mirandas2cool
    July 29, 2008 at 8:24 pm

    Stephen H., i completely agree with you too. There has got to be some form out there still.

  222. Todd
    July 29, 2008 at 8:26 pm

    I don’t know if payola in the truest sense still goes on but I guarantee that these music consultant firms that choose radio stations playlists have one thing in mind, which song will bring in the most advertisement money. They couldn’t care less if the song is a good one as long as the sponsors like it play it. How else do you explain the incredibly quick trip up the charts Jessica Simpson’s single has enjoyed. Every blog I’ve been to that isn’t a fan blog for her consists of about 95% negative comments about her and her song so the fans certainly aren’t the reason it flying up the charts.

  223. Stormy
    July 29, 2008 at 8:45 pm

    And keep in mind that Jessica got booed at the show of a radio station that plays her music.

  224. Matt B.
    July 29, 2008 at 10:07 pm

    Todd it’s simple. There was interest in that single from Jessica Simpson. That’s why it’s completely homogeneous to what’s currently on the radio these days (It’s not all that different from “Red High Heels melodically). It was certainly calculated. Will radio play her next single? Who knows.


    People booed her because they see her as an ‘outsider’ even more so than other ‘transplants.’

    (Look at me sounding like an apologist for her, I swear I’m not).

  225. Stormy
    July 29, 2008 at 10:11 pm

    But this is a fan base who supposedly embraced her by asking for her song on the radio.

  226. Todd
    July 29, 2008 at 11:16 pm

    Matt that’s my point there was interest mostly negative, but since EVERYONE knows who Jessica Simpson is and is curious about her song she gets a free ride to the top 20 no matter what kind of song she records.Meanwhile if your making your debut unless you’ve had some sort of previous national exposure you’re SOL. Why,because most radio stations are slaves to advertisers, and advertisers think name recognition equals more listener. While that may be true I have to think if mainstream radio played better music listenership would go up even more.

  227. Matt B.
    July 29, 2008 at 11:46 pm


    Labels are looking for the same things.

  228. Mirandas2cool
    July 30, 2008 at 10:25 am

    I agree 100% Todd.

  229. Todd
    July 30, 2008 at 11:39 am

    Very true Matt

  230. northtexas
    August 4, 2008 at 10:53 pm
  231. Chris J
    August 5, 2008 at 12:20 am

    I’m not a huge Carrie fan and I just have to agree with this reveiw…Now how is it a risk I don’t understnd but, it is broken. The video is better plus when the timeline is explained it makes the song even worse then it even is.

  232. bresenolouie
    August 5, 2008 at 2:47 am

    The music video’s narrative is well explained by “DUDLEY” above in comment #2. Roman White used the “FLASHFORWARD” cinematic device and “DUDLEY” explained it perfectly well and Chris N. also explained the narrative perfectly well. If you do not know anything about this cinematic device, then you will not understand this music video.

  233. bresenolouie
    August 5, 2008 at 11:17 am

    This is a haunting tale of a young widow attending the funeral of her military husband. The “FLASHFORWARD” cinematic device was used and started with the conversation of the husband and wife about themselves and then she felt nervous about tomorrow and his deployment to war and then his plans for their future. Then the wedding in the church was shown first and then changes to that same church doors opening for her husband’s funeral. The white dress and wedding veil was transformed to black dress and black veil. Her memories of the church were of their wedding day (metaphorically white) and then the day of the funeral(metaphorically black). She is in a state of denial and could not believe that this is happening to her and it was clearly shown from the facial expressions and also the confusing and life changing aspects of dealing the tragic loss of her dearest husband – the emotional pain and suffering of losing her dearest husband.

  234. bresenolouie
    August 5, 2008 at 8:40 pm

    “Best Actress Award” for Carrie Underwood. The conversations between the military husband and Carrie in the car, the night before he was deployed to war made the music video even more powerful. At the beginning of the video, the military husband asked, “So, you are thinking about tomorrow? We have some rules. Carrie asked, “What rules?” Husband, “Well, let us think about this night as between you and me only…” Scene 2, Carrie felt nervous about her husband being deployed to war. Carrie, “I feel nervous about tomorrow.” Husband, “Tomorrow is just another day.” Scene 3, Husband, “I have our whole life plan for us and it is perfect.” Carrie, “Promise?”. Then they showed Carrie crying in the funeral and then she is in front of the coffin of her military husband and she held on to that American Flag given to her, THAT IS WHAT IS LEFT OF HIM. Man…I shed lots of tears. MY HEART GOES TO OUR MEN AND WOMEN IN UNIFORM AND THEIR FAMILIES, FIGHTING FOR OUR FREEDOM!!!

  235. Vicki
    August 5, 2008 at 11:49 pm

    Ok…we have our opinions of Carrie. Can we agree at least that the girl can sing? I would love for her to sing more classic country songs. Just a album of half and half would be fine thank you.

  236. Rhianna
    September 4, 2008 at 4:43 am

    Im sorry but if she was going to marry a man im pretty sure she would know if he passed away or not. Not walk into a church she thought was a wedding and it was changed to a funeral. One no human being on earth would surprise a person like that, and two if you had any idea how much planning it takes to do a military wedding, specially if they person passed away over seas. You would in no way think that. Thats an insane way of thinking. My step father passed away on July 7th of 2007 and his funeral ( he was cremated) was held on August 11th 2007. A week after my wedding. Even that short of time was considered a rush. She wore what she was going to wear to her wedding, to her husband-to-bes funeral. Some significant others wear there beloveds favorite color, or piece of clothing they have. My step father passed away two weeks after my mother and him got married. She was originally going to wear her wedding dress ( a very simple off white dress) to his funeral but from all the weight she had lost( he was in a coma for a week) it didn’t fit her any more and she knew that her beloved liked when she wore clothes that she looked nice in. So she didn’t in his memory. He was a retired military man and they did the shots. They last one feels like it goes down to your soul and rips a piece out. I miss that man every day. We now have an angel in heaven looking over all of us, but id rather have him back on this earth.

  237. krandall johnson
    September 22, 2008 at 4:52 pm



  238. britt
    November 24, 2008 at 1:10 am

    love the song all u idiots that dont understand it and say it sucks well yall r stupid obviously if u cant understand whats going on

  239. Razor X
    November 24, 2008 at 8:09 am

    “love the song all u idiots that dont understand it and say it sucks well yall r stupid obviously if u cant understand whats going on”

    Being called stupid by someone who can’t spell properly is akin to being called ugly by a bullfrog.

  240. Angela
    December 10, 2008 at 7:08 pm

    U r all idiots if you don’t like this song because it is alsome!!!! <3 if you get the meaning of the song you WILL LOVE IT to!!!!! <3<3<3<3

  241. chrissy
    May 21, 2009 at 4:51 pm

    @_@ IM WATCHEN U

  242. chrissy
    May 21, 2009 at 4:51 pm


  243. Dan
    September 10, 2009 at 11:26 pm

    This is another masterpiece from our girl Carrie!

  244. Finnur
    September 17, 2009 at 6:29 pm

    Matt C. I have to tell you, you’re completely wrong about the first verse. It ain’t like she thinks she’s going to her own wedding, but that’s what could have been and what would have been if it wasn’t for the fact that he got killed, and when she goes through those church doors reality finally breaks through.

  245. Stormy
    September 17, 2009 at 6:34 pm

    The whole song is like Hillary Lindsey, Steve McEwan, Gordie Sampson forgot that they aren’t supposed to drink the bong water.

  246. Laughter
    September 24, 2009 at 10:46 am

    Now Im even more confused, as compared to the first time I heard it.

  247. Superawesomechica
    March 29, 2010 at 8:42 pm

    You ppl are insane! This is a very awesome song! It’s so deep and Carrie is such an amazingly talented singer. You are wack if you think all that crap!

  248. ALJID
    March 29, 2010 at 8:58 pm

    I thought this thread was closed ages ago?

  249. Steve M.
    March 29, 2010 at 9:10 pm

    I thought it was crack that was wack?

  250. stormy
    March 29, 2010 at 10:31 pm

    You ppl are insane! This is a very awesome song! It’s so deep and Carrie is such an amazingly talented singer.

    We don’t think any of that crap, so we are not wack. Like Crack.

  251. Steve M.
    March 29, 2010 at 10:33 pm

    Now you sound a like dues paying fan club member!

  252. stormy
    March 29, 2010 at 10:55 pm

    Actually, I was disecting her paragraph.

  253. Steve M.
    March 29, 2010 at 11:01 pm

    Ah-I am getting my threads mixed up.

  254. K
    March 29, 2010 at 11:40 pm

    You ppl are insane! This is a very awesome song! It’s so deep and Carrie is such an amazingly talented singer.
    “We don’t think any of that crap, so we are not wack. Like Crack.”

    Are you sure about that? Even if you don’t care for Carrie’s voice or songs, I think most people can admit to her talent.

    I think “Just A Dream” is an incredible song and a cut above anything Carrie has recorded. She shows conviction and a deep emotional attachment to the song, which she has seemed to have trouble with in the past.


    You asked what “clasic” country songs Carrie has recorded:
    “I Told You So”
    “Look At Me”
    “I Will Always Love You,” “Islands In The Stream,” “9 to 5,” all by Dolly Parton.
    “Make The World Go Away” with Brad Paisley
    “Lousiana Woman, Missippi Man” with Brad Paisley

    Carrie is a current artist, but I wouldn’t hesitate to argue that she respects the roots more than many other artists in her position. She knows about the history of the genere, and she doesn’t hesitate to intoroduce it to her younger fans without overwhelming them.

    The American Idol argument isn’t even worth discussing. Artists don’t play in clubs for tips anymore; artists are able to use various resoruces like Idol, Myspace, Facebook, Twitter, and every other peice of technology to their advantage. As Carrie has said, anyone who says they wouldn’t take a huge oppertunity to be exposed to millions of veiwers every week is probably lying. She took an oppertunity and just happened to be successful, so people have a problem. I don’t hear anyone saying anything about the thousands who haven’t been successful. How about Katherine Mcphee, Nekko Smith, Vonzell Sollemen, Bo Bice, Matt Guirad, Adam Lambert, Diana DeGarmo, and dozens of others like them? Going on a TV show that is known worldwide doesn’t automatically mean success. It may get you noticed, but that doesn’t mean you will be able to sell records, concert tickets, downloads, and keep your name out there. There’s a reason why Carrie and Kelly Clarkson are the only huge success stories from an nine-year-old show.

    There is little difference between Miranda and Carrie. Miranda went on a TV show, so did Carrie. Miranda didn’t have as much exposure, but she got a whole lot more than the thousands standing in a subway station who would jump at that kind of exposure. It’s not excatly Carrie’s fault that she chose to go on the bigger show. She was taking a huge chance by marketing herself as a country artist on a pop show. Miranda could’ve done that as well.

    If you think about it, Carrie’s career didn’t explode until “Before He Cheats” came out, which was a while after she won Idol. Even now Carrie is still incredibly successful, but her album sales have slowed because she didn’t have a huge crossover hit. Those people who bought her first album may have been exposed to her, but that doesn’t mean she will automatically gain more momentum.

    Even though awards are largely political, I feel better knowing they’re going to someone with excellent talent, rather than a winner who leaves you scratching your head. People like to complain about anyone who isn’t the hot artist of the moment. A few years ago it was Rascal Flatts, then people were in an uproar about Carrie winning awards that she “didn’t deserve.” Now, it’s Swift and people are saying things like “at least Carrie can sing.” Miranda is talented, but I doubt her fans would be complaining about how “unfair” the business is if she were the one selling out concerts, downloads, and CD’s.

  255. Steve M.
    March 29, 2010 at 11:57 pm

    I commented on the previous poster’s use of the word whack, not the song. I freely admit not to listening to Underwood.

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